She struck out on her own in her teens, working in fast-food restaurants while finishing high school.
She got a job as a nurse's aide to pay her way through college, earning a nursing degree.
As a wife and mother, she has been devoted to her husband, whom she met in a college anatomy class, and to their two teenage boys.
"She would work (three 12-hour shifts) so she was home with her boys and so she would never miss one of their games," said her sister, Misty Sibley. "Her world revolved around her boys. That was her life."
Kamin was clinging to her life at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle on Tuesday.
Just before midnight Sunday, she suffered severe head injuries when a stolen pickup truck slammed into her car in downtown Everett.
Kamin, a registered nurse, was just a few blocks from her job at the south campus of Providence Regional Medical Center Everett. The full-size Ford F350 pickup allegedly was driven by a convicted car thief who was trying to outrun police, who had chased him all the way from Bothell.
She is "severely injured with a possibility of not making it through," Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Elise Deschenes said in court Tuesday.
The Mukilteo woman suffered massive head injuries in the collision at Rucker and Pacific avenues.
The high-speed chase began when Bothell patrol officers spotted the pickup truck, which had been reported stolen from Lake Stevens last week. An Everett District Court judge on Tuesday set bail at $1 million for the suspect, Joseph D. Strange, 33. He has a long criminal history of stealing cars and trying to elude police.
He's being held for investigation of second-degree assault, auto theft and attempting to elude police while being an ex-con on community custody.
More serious charges are possible, depending on Kamin's medical condition.
"The prognosis does not look positive," Everett police officer Aaron Snell said.
Sibley shared family photos of Kamin with her sons. In one, Kamin was surfing beside one of her boys in Hawaii.
Kamin, 40, always believed in saving up for one big family vacation each year.
Otherwise, she was quite frugal, her sister said.
"They wouldn't buy frivolous stuff," Sibley said. "They weren't materialistic. All she saved for was her kids' college educations. That's what every penny went into. My sister is so caring. She loves her children so much."
Everett detectives are looking for another passenger car hit by the fleeing pickup truck Sunday night at an AM/PM convenience store in the 1500 block of 1500 164th Street SE. That collision occurred just before 11:30 p.m. on Sunday.
They are asking that driver and anyone who witnessed the collision to call the Everett Police Department tip line at 425-257-8450.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; firstname.lastname@example.org.
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